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Thank the Process

Our goals and to do lists, those are the signs of progress right? We are supposed to know what we want, plan the steps to meet our goals with a deadline, list out our doable daily increments, and check them off one by one. Easy peasy lemon squeezey. Success is measured in doable daily increments. And we forget the importance of being present in the process. We’ve replaced process with destination.

Yet, focused on the outcome, our fear of not achieving this can halt us mid-process. When we are soooo invested in the outcome, vulnerable enough to be completely stopped by our pitfalls, and so set on the perfection of accomplishments, we may overlook those moments of our lives in which our life truly happens. The opportunistic moments of lessons to be learned. The slant of the sunlight or the unmistakable shift in our feelings towards our lives and the people within them. Scariest of all, we may mistake our fears as a sign that this direction is not for us even when yesterday it totally was.

Thank the Process on Shalavee.com

If I allow for the process within the progress, if I thank the process for transforming me while I was “making Progress”, what would that give me? I’d say it would give me context and gratitude you can’t find on any to do list. We can deepen our progress by savoring the process. Let’s collect our tidbits, our lessons, our insights, our grief, and keep moving on toward what makes us feel scared and awesome.

We can deepen our progress by savoring the process.

Were you to allow yourself to persist through and beyond the fear, you’d find that the fear is fleeting. And the accomplished feeling of the follow through, unbelievably uplifting. The fear will fade and what you are left with is the progress, the growth that happened during the process. What you are left with is your self-pride for attempting the thing you feared.

What have you done in spite of your fears that left you feeling proud of your process? What are you shying away from because you think the fear is a sign it’s a bad idea? Share here or somewhere.

 

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Creative Overwhelm

Seems what I have is quite common for creative types. The flood of creative ideas followed by the need to act on them all right now. And then my brain locks up, creative overwhelm. Like too many programs running on the computer, you staring at the screen and the screen staring back at you. And often, I stay overwhelmed, poking at one or two endeavors but never feeling like I’m accomplishing anything. Because even when I do, the amount of tasks is daunting in comparison. And nothing can make the grade when the curve is that steep.Creative overwhelm on Shalavee.com

Perspective to the rescue. If all things are fabulous than nothing is. If there’s too many items on the to do list, I’m overwhelmed. And even if I accomplish anything, it doesn’t look or feel like it comparably.

What if there were a way to separate the ideas from the action lists. To quarantine them, contain them from spilling out and having me feel like I’m standing still comparatively. Because a year is a mighty long time when you devote a little time regularly to one thing. I think it’s possible to accomplish a lot more than we do, or think we can, if we’re clever and intentional. I just think it’s all in the way we’re looking at it. Because Perspective is my additional word for the year.Chessie napping on Shalavee.com

Conversely, I think we can sabotage ourselves a million ways past Sunday if we do “all or nothing” thinking and don’t allow for our humanity. Push , push, strive for perfection, every achievement is hollow, never good enough because we’re not good enough. When I hear my brain use words like always, completely, perfectly, it’s a flag for the need for some perspective there. I’m aware of how my auto-pilot goes into autocratic mode. And the outcome will prove my unworthiness every time.

So I’ll start with my aspirations and my lists. Pick one or two things to focus on until they’re done, keep my blinders on to the bigger list, and celebrate my small one at a time victories. Sabotage starts with mindfulness.  I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

My Uber Creative Brain

Finally this year I figured out the nice term to use for my busy making brain. It’s Uber Creative. Uber means an “outstanding or supreme example of a particular kind of person or thing”. Add creative and I often feel like I’m doing circles around myself and getting nowhere.

For instance, I have a list of what I should be doing today with my precious time. I’ve gotten some done but it seems the list and hopeful intentions are stretching out in front of me like some depth of field camera trick from The Shining. I’m drowning in my own creativity.BArbies in the pool on Shalavee.com

If only I could just stop creating and catch up. But alas, that isn’t how this gift works. Let me show you a sliver of my brain’s over-acheiving.

  1. I thought two days ago that it may be better if we switched the dining room and living rooms.

  2. I need to make a project out of my Kudos into a brag wall. Hand lettering the best parts of the quotes perhaps and collaging them on a board or wall?

  3. I need to find out the best way to produce cards out of my artwork to sell on Etsy.

  4. I am desperately in need of creating cards or anything for the Etsy store I have yet to finish setting up. Also need profile blurb.

  5. And I still need to go through pictures to see what I can use and what that Instagram challenge will want starting tomorrow.

  6. I want to make flags for the front porch out of my pile of vintage fabric.

  7. And how many blog posts will it take to get me through to the end of August?

  8. A rewrite of the about me for the blog is in the works but I need to work on it a lot more and add pictures definitely.

  9. Need to finish gathering and designing for a special event two weeks from now.

  10. Got to go dye my hair roots and maybe I can take a look at that online branding course I’ve yet to tackle while that’s setting.

I am exhausted even typing all of that. And that probably isn’t the half of it.band of horses on Shalavee.com

I spin like a top from one task to the other not wanting to forget anything as all the thoughts have merit. I also laugh as I seem to crave success, thus all the activities, while simultaneously running away from it by staying unorganized. My trick is to notice the amount of stuff I do accomplish and stop judging for what I don’t. I have more goals and that can’t be a bad thing. I have to be craftier about prioritizing them and to do lists/scheduling them. If you have a system that you like for keeping yourself organized, please let me know in the comments. I’m going to check out OneNote. I’ve had Evernote on my phone forever and never taken the time to figure it out. Great, that’s #11 on the creating chaos brain list.lego creations by uber creative Eamon on Shalavee.com

PS And all creative pictures are credited to my kids. The horses and barbies are Fiona’s and the amazing swirly drawing and made up lego cruiser are Eamon’s.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

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Too Many Aspirations and Expectations

My numerous aspirations and expectations and absolutes are a few of my favorite weapons of self-destruction adding to the slow but certain loss of my mind. What’s left is now being eaten away slowly by my toddler and 9-year-old. I am left to spin in circles with the one foot nailed down, drooling like some captured Mommy Zombie groaning, “Brains, brains”. Because these brains are what I seem to be lacking and in need of replacement these days.

My arsenal of self defeat is well stocked with a life time of my weapons of self-destruction. The over used expectometer seems to have me thinking that many things are doable when in fact they really aren’t. Like my recent vacation that wasn’t relaxing because kids + vacation time may not equal that relaxation you equate with a vacation. The booby trap I fall for every time is the concept that I’m super Mom and I’ll be able to accomplish all my household and blog tasks, or those thrown at me by my husband (“Can you go get, go mail, or call blank?”), fulfill the instantaneous needs of my children (she’s fallen and is crying again for the tenth time TODAY), aaannndd take on a DIY project that involves a sewing machine. The expectometer will self destruct in five…four…three…two… Kablewie.

water guns from Shalavee.com

The regular imbibing of tonic water and my Absolutes gets me thinking that before I get to do/enjoy A, I must first be done with B. I can’t… read a book…redecorate that room…or go out with a friend…until I’ve…cleaned the house…balanced the checkbook… or decided what my purpose in life is. There’s contingencies I’m tripping over everywhere. If you did this to a kid, you’d be the meanest parent ever. For real, you would be. You can’t have this until you do that. Eventually the kid concedes he’ll just never get anything because the bar keeps getting moved. And he gives up on him/herself, figuring he/she is no longer worth the struggle.

And then there’s my many many many numerous aspirations. Nothing is wrong with wanting more in one’s life. But when everything you want to do is constantly piled high as the sky on this platter, you end up feeling overwhelmed and under-capable. I’ve got people, projects, and changes that need to happen in my To-Do line up. And my system for scheduling and delegation to even handle the daily tasks sucks. So imagine when you throw all the other ‘change the world’ stuff on top. Then it becomes me who sucks. Dispersed and frustrated, I can never feel like I am getting anywhere. How Ya' Doin' from Shalavee.com

Lastly, there’s my lack of boundaries. This inability to decide when to say no, who to say no to, and what to toss out of my antiquated lifestyle and system management, leaves me raw. Because there’s just not enough time or energy in the day for all of it. And I fear Mommy’s zombie brain will begin taking others out with her.

I am going to focus on systems now, writing it all down, practice saying no to everyone including myself, and figure out a way to be OK with not being on top of it all always. And if things are unfinished or screwed up, I’m going to practice letting go. Practice makes perfect. And dismantling a well established arsenal takes time.

Thinking About Getting It Together

Again, motherhood had muddled my mind.  Nap-time was upon me and again, I had a vague notion that I could be and desperately needed to be, accomplishing something, anything. Now if I could only find that list I made of all those tasks I really needed to finish doing instead of chasing my tail. Because that paralysis had set in. Again.

Those lists are made. I’m a fine list maker. And then they stick around out on a table and next to my chair for a while until their presence becomes menacing, a reminder of the childcare that’s not in place for that date for the thing I want to do but can’t. And so I stick it in “that” folder. And out of sight, out of mind. What list? What folder?

st mikes

And I’m then thinking, am I as un-together as I think I am or do I just have too many expectations and desires about how I want to move my life onwards? Because keeping the babies alive and fed and napped and entertained without ignoring them into negligence is a very time-consuming task. Or is it my process that needs revamping? I think it’s both.

Fiona Marie with a pencil and a hairclip from Shalavee.com

All those Apps and programs and gizmos and lists are only as good as the habit you’ve created to use them. There are only so many hours in the day and not all of them are your top energy packed productive hours. If you have only kids in school, you are already lucky enough. But with little ones still at home, you just have to develop systems and get help to care for them if you want to gain ground instead of just hold it.

Sometimes I get the overwhelming feeling that if I can just write it all down. I mean ALL down and get it out of my head, I will feel less agitated. Include all the tasks I want to accomplish, cleaning musts, thank you notes, shopping, meals, stuff I wished I’d said, courses I want to take, ideas for next Christmas, cobweb I spotted in the hallway, thoughts on spiritual enlightenment, books to read, day-trips to take, reasons for breaking up with my hairdresser, and marketing ideas for my yet unspoken business idea. To name a few examples of what happens at any given time in my busy brain.

The floor from Shalavee.com

For me, the biggest roadblock is often, “I don’t have the funds”. “I can’t because” is a good indicator of the things you are afraid of and not the state of your bank account. And provided my lists are in plain sight, sometimes just sitting with my pile of lists, papers, folders, notebooks, and journals and looking at them and a calendar and a blank piece of paper can inspire me to create new goals and revamp old ones.

The trick is to know when the overwhelmed feeling that causes you continuous paralysis is hurting you. If you aren’t proud of the choices you are making, make different ones. If it’s a matter of depression, perhaps postpartum or losing someone close, seek help, be a good parent to yourself and move yourself on over the bump. Have compassion and be kind but do something even if it’s wrong, as my husband’s fond of saying. Keep at your habit changing and task mastering methods until you find one that works.

Playing in the cat food on Shalavee.com

And do as much as you possibly can to plan out everything in your way. Set a date on a calendar to go through your closets for the big yard sale. (That was yesterday and today. Some progress was made.) Take 15 minutes to go to recipe sites and make up a menu for your week. You can change it but you’ll have something to change. Or go ahead and plan the date with friends and loved ones to celebrate your ties. Plan it and put it on the calendar because the day eventually comes, you enjoy the heck out of yourself, and wonder why you didn’t plan this sooner?

I feel immensely pepped up, how about you? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not uber-organized Simple Mom Super blogger but a little will go a long way. Check off blog post. Next?

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